Trading on Presidential Futures

Discussion in 'Trading' started by cstfx, May 8, 2008.

  1. cstfx


    I hope this does not get moved to Siberia (politics or chit chat) since this trading I am talking about, but...

    Anyone playing the election futures at intrade?

    Are there actual payouts for this betting? Anyone making any money at it?

    I saw the numbers on Obama and McCain, and while Obama seems poised to go to 100 on the nomination, McCain is less than 40 on the general election and I'm thinking those numbers may go up a bit before the fall as the head to head competition heats up.

    Who's playing these futures?
  2. bellman


    I trade sporting event on Tradesports myself, and I used to enjoy trading political events until the Trade Exchange Network spun Intrade off and segregated the political, weather, etc from sport. It's frustrating, but I think they were feeling pressure from legislation pushed through by Bush. That said, I have a small inactive account at Intrade that I've been meaning to activate and add some deposits to. The markets there are quite efficient, especially if you compare them to other futures. Market depth makes it difficult to get extremely rich, but it's a fun trading exercise anyways.

  3. E R

    E R

    Hi Bellman,

    I noticed you're in the US. Any issues with these regulations against gambling or accessing oversees places like Intrade to trade events?

    I was thinking about getting into this area too for fun, but remember the constant headaches accessing accounts for poker a few years back when one bank or card company after another backed off.

  4. I too used to play, with intrade, but its so hard to add money now..

    Presidential outcome contracts at the link above.
  5. Not trading them but am following them as they seem to be a pretty accurate on who is favored at any time (since money is on the line).

    Not being political but :) I think Obama will have an advantage in presenting himself and thinking on his feet and McCain will have an advantage on the economic side (with the perception that the Dems are more likely to make things worse than the Repubs). I think that the economy getting worse into the election is actually an advantage for McCain (and will take some more scrutiny off of Iraq where I believe that McCain's posture is less popular than Obama's) even though they're had the Presidency during the downturn.

    I think following this is a great way to keep a good read on who has the best chance to win.
  6. cstfx


    If the economy tanks going into the elections, McCain is toast. No Republican in recent memory has won the election when the country's economy has been in a recession. I think the spreads are what's important on a bet like this. As it stands, Obama has over a 15 pt advantage on McCain. Depending on McC's running mate, that spread will probably tighten going into the fall, and as a contract, probably worth buying @ 37.
  7. My guess is that McCain will try and go with Mitt Romney as his running mate (I would), the guy who is perceived to be smart on the economics side. It's hard for me to visualize him picking anyone else available and having it be an advantage for him. He probably needs to avoid the evangelical connection at this point.

    I disagree about the toasty economy tanking McCain - counterintuitive maybe but I still think that that would work against any Dem candidate because of the perception of them being more likely to raise taxes - capital gains and income - though they might do a better job with the deficit. The economy tanking also makes Iraq less of an issue (would favor McCain).

    If I were Obama, I guess I'd try and go with Edwards as a running mate - Hillary definitely wouldn't work. Or, he could try and find someone more neutral than Edwards (less unpopular).